25th Dubai World Cup – Fields Take Shape

Countdown to 27 March

A cast of 14 Group or Grade 1 winners, with a combined 23 victories at the highest level, are set to line up for the 25th running of Dubai World Cup day at Meydan Racecourse on Saturday 27 March.

A total of 117 horses from 11 countries will compete across a spectacular day of racing worth USD$26.5m that features six Gr1 and three Gr2 contests.

Mystic Guide seen winning the Gr2 Jim Dandy Stakes at Saratoga Race Course.(Pic- Coglianese Photos)

The Gr1 $12m Dubai World Cup Sponsored by Emirates Airline and held over 2000m welcomes a 14-strong line up headed by the highest-rated Mystic Guide (USA), trained by Michael Stidham in the USA. Mystic Guide is one of three Godolphin-owned runners in the field with the Saeed Bin Suroor-trained Gifts of Gold (IRE) also representing the home team. The third Godolphin runner comes in the shape of Magny Cours (USA), the charge of French maestro, Andre Fabre who is making his dirt debut in the Dubai World Cup.

See the likely fields here

Yet the Godolphin runners face stiff competition from a three-strong team of US raiders including the 2021 Pegasus World Cup runner up, Jesus’ Team (USA), for trainer Jose Francisco D’Angelo and the Miguel Angel Silva-prepared Gr2 winner Sleepy Eyes Todd (USA). Title Ready (USA) winner of January’s Gr3 Louisiana Stakes trained by Dallas Stewart completes the US lineup.

Japanese interests are represented by Gr1 winner, Chuwa Wizard (JPN), who claimed the Champions Cup at Chukyo Racecourse in December 2020 for trainer, Ryuji Okubo while Uruguay’s Ajuste Fiscal (URU) lines up for trainer, Antonio Cintra. Bahraini handler, Fawzi Nass saddles a first Dubai World Cup runner with Salute

The Soldier (GER), whose route to the Dubai World Cup included victory in two out of the three traditional Dubai prep races – the Gr2 Al Maktoum Challenge Round 2 over 1900m and the Gr1 Al Maktoum Challenge Round 3 over the same 2000m of the Dubai World Cup. Great Scot, third in The Saudi Cup last month, flies the flag for Saudi Arabia and trainer, Abdullah Mishriff.

Chrono Genesis seen here winning in the 65th running of the Arima Kinen in 2020 (Pic- JRA)

A stellar renewal of the Gr1 $6m 2410m Longines Dubai Sheema Classic seems certain with Japan’s supermare, the multiple Gr1 winner, Chrono Genesis (JPN), trained by Takashi Saito, lining up against dual Gr1 winner and Hong Kong Vase star, Mogul (GB) who represents Irish supremo, Aidan O’Brien.

The Bill Mott trained four-time Gr1 winner, Channel Maker (CAN) will be looking to go one better following his runner up spot to True Self (IRE) in the Neom Turf Cup in February while the John Gosden-trained 2021 Saudi Cup hero, Mishriff (IRE) is stepping up in trip and making a return to turf.

The 1800m $4m Gr1 Dubai Turf Sponsored by DP World features a strong UK contingent, with Lord North (IRE) winner of the Gr1 Prince of Wales Stakes from the Gosden yard, Lord Glitters, victor of the Gr1 Jebel Hatta on Super Saturday trained by David O’Meara, the Sir Michael Stoute trained Regal Reality (GB) as well as the Simon Crisford-trained pair of Court House (IRE) and Epic Hero (FR) all lining up.

The Gr1 $1.5m 1200m Dubai Golden Shaheen sponsored by Gulf News, boasts a multi-national field including the Doug O’Neill trained Wildman Jack (USA) winner of the 2020 Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint and fellow US-based Group winner, Yaupon (USA) trained by Steve Asmussen who seeks redemption following his Breeder’s Cup Sprint tilt in November.

The Americans will take on Capella Stakes victor, Justin (JPN) trained by Akira Murayama who renews his rivalry with Copano Kicking (USA) and Matera Sky (USA) the winner and runner up respectively in the Riyadh Dirt Sprint three weeks ago.

Elsewhere on the card Japan’s Pink Kamehameha (JPN), trained by Hideyuki Mori seeks victory in the Gr2 1900m $750,000 UAE Derby Sponsored by Emirates NBD having already landed the Saudi equivalent over a mile.

Stablemate France Go De Ina (USA) and the Yukihiro Kato trained Takeru Pegasus (JPN) complete a powerful Japanese Derby challenge while Dubai World Cup Carnival star, El Patriota(URU) prepared by Cintra represents Uruguay.

The Gr1 US$1m Al Quoz Sprint Sponsored by AZIZI features Godolphin’s Charlie Appleby trained Space Blues(IRE), fresh from victory in The Saudi Cup’s 1351 Turf Sprint, Dubai World Cup Carnival star Equilateral (GB) trained by Charlie Hills and Cowan (USA) who was a fast-finishing second in the Saudi Derby and is another prepared by Asmussen.

Testing their staying power in the Group 2 $750,000 Dubai Gold Cup Sponsored by Al Tayer Motors are the Gr1 Prix Royal Oak-winner Subjectivist, trained by Mark Johnston alongside Gr2 winners, Walderbe (GER), trained by Germany’s Ralf Rohne, the Andrew Balding trained Spanish Mission (USA) and Red Verdon (GB) trained by Ed Dunlop.

The Gr2 $750,000 Godolphin Mile Sponsored by Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum City – District One features 2020 Curlin Stakes winner, Parsimony (USA) trained by Doug O’Neill alongside Saudi raider Urban Icon, trained by Saud Saad M Alkahtani, Multiple UAE Champion Trainer, Doug Watson saddles the trio of Midnight Sands (USA), Premier Star (USA) and Golden Goal (IRE) while Satish Seemar’s Zabeel Stables also sends out three including Secret Ambition (GB), Roman Rosso (ARG) and Tuz (USA). The Salem Bin Ghadayer trained Blown By The Wind (GB) lines up alongside Japan’s Dieu Du Vin (JPN) and the Saeed Bin Suroor trained Dubai Mirage (IRE).

The Gr1 $750,000 2000m Dubai Kahayla Classic Sponsored by Mubadala has attracted an impressive list of the world’s best Purebred Arabians including Gr1 winner Hajres (TUN) from the yard of French trainer, Elisabeth Bernard, Al Maktoum Challenge Round 2 winner and track record holder, RB Frynchh Dude trained by the UAE’s Helal Alalawi and the Didier Guillemin trained Deryan, winner of the 2020 The President of the UAE Cup at Deauville.

Also lining up are the Mutlaq Bin Mushreef trained pair of Mubasher Al Khalediah (KSA) and Mutawakel Al Khalediah (KSA) winner and runner up respectively in the Obaiya Arabian Classic last month.

The Dubai World Cup is being held behind closed doors on Saturday March 27, 2021 and will see a modification to the purse structure meaning that prize money will be paid out to 8th place.

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